Alex Birlo on September 3, 2019

The Order 1886 a Re-Review

Back in 2015, we saw the release of a game called “The Order 1886”. It checked all the boxes as a SONY PlayStation 4 exclusive: hype built up, high quality, talented developers. But it did not do as well as expected.

The game received mixed reviews, a 63 on Metacritic and a controversial reception from the public. It was short, it had bugs, extremely linear, with zero replayability and was still sold at full 60$ dollars price.

But it always had a special place in my heart. And recently I took another, rather refreshing and sober, look at the game and dug up some new info regarding whether there will be a sequel or not.

Let justice be done!

We had already heard all the bad stuff about the game and recapped its flaws, so now let us talk about the good stuff and give some well-deserved praise to the team at “Ready at Dawn” for the hard work.

  • The looks:
    The game looks amazing even today, almost 5 years later. The textures, the lighting, and the cinematic feel are all holding up to standards. And this is something that cannot be said about a lot of games after so long. God, 2015 was a good year – Bloodborne, the last GOOD MGS game…
  • The AI:
    Not the smartest ever created. Even so, the enemies’ AI – which is not the best – still managed to empress me and put me into difficult situations throughout the firefights in the game.
  • The characters and tech:
    The characters, together with the setting of the story, take the spotlight. There are not many characters, just enough, and you can clearly distinguish one from the other and recall them long after you finished playing. This is achieved by the superb acting of the cast, the great facial and motion capture.
  • The setting:
    The setting is mesmerizing. London, with its weather and architecture and the industrial revolution with its potential for creative steampunk technology. All mixed up with the supernatural presence of vampires and lycans (werewolves that can transform at will); and her majesties’ knights that form their version of “King Arthur’s Round Table” and hunt all supernatural.
  • The love and care:
    Despite the overall negative memory, we all have about the game, it can be objectively said that the team had great care for the project. It can be seen all throughout what little of the game we have. The details of the rooms that had no value or reason for us to come into, but still had an immense amount of details and felt lived in. The carefully crafted areas for each encounter and the great mix between the “walk and talk” sections and the “run and kill stuff” sections even gave me “The Last of Us” vibes!

*A little side-note – Ready at Dawn is comprised of former Naughty Dog and Blizzard developers after all.

Years later

Now, replaying the game without the bugs and with a different expectation, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I have enjoyed the game. Even knowing about all its major plot twists.

Yes, it was probably TOO short and lacking replayability for its initial 60 dollars price tag. And probably overhyped…

But none the less, to replay it now means to guaranty yourself a great 6 to 7 hours of entertaining supernatural, steampunk action. Which leaves you wanting more and wishing they released a sequel that learned from past mistakes and let you get back into that awesome universe.

And for the discounted price you can get it now, I can definitely recommend trying it out.

What the future holds

Regarding a sequel. Back in 2015 chief executive of “Ready at Dawn” Paul Sams basically said that they really loved the game and creating the universe. And that this game was never written as a single story, and that it was supposed to be with several entries. And that they hope to one day return to the development.

The problem is that back then the studio, Ready at Dawn, was too small to claim anything and SONY has complete ownership of this IP and it is up to them if anything is going to be done with it. And SONY are looking at the overall reception and monetary value of the project.

Back in July, there was a rumor that got a lot of attention, as a writer from Sucker Punch said something about the matter on the Gamerheads podcast. Later he clarified on his Twitter that he had no insider knowledge about a sequel, but he referred to something he read in articles that were posted on the topic.

The story of “Ready at Dawn” really reminds Insomniac games – which is a first-party studio that made the new Marvel Spiderman, Ratchet and Clank and Spyro – and the one time they actually made an exclusive for the Xbox One, called “Sunset Overdrive”.

They had a similar problem. SONY had total ownership of the studios’ IP. The Spyro, the Ratchet and Clank, the Resistance games and the studio had no insurance in case they broke apart. So they made a one-time deal with Microsofts’ Xbox division, made Sunset Overdrive and retained ownership of it.


Currently, Ready at Dawn are working on their own stuff for the Oculus Rift and are making a VR game called Lone Echo. A second one in fact, because the first one already happened… and was a success for them. So, even if SONY suddenly decide to make a sequel for The Order 1886 it will be made by a different studio, perhaps even Santa Monica Studios, with whom Ready at Dawn collaborated previously, on other games for SONY.

Once a Knight“Always a Knight” or “A Knight No More”?